Saturday, February 28, 2009

Brimrose NIR Analyzer

A new series of miniature near-infrared (NIR) spectrometers is said to offer a cost-effective tool for inspecting incoming raw materials and product quality control. Compact, battery-powered Model 5030 ATOF-NIR Portable Analyzer from Brimrose Corp. of America, Baltimore, allows laboratory tests to be performed anywhere in a plant environment. The instrument, which sells for $28,000 (compared with $40,000 for larger units), is reportedly insensitive to ambient light, vibration, dust, and dirt. Its design allows for quick switchover from solids to liquids, and results appear instantly on its LCD. Applications include material identification or measurement of moisture content and active-ingredient levels. Once the instrument is calibrated, it reportedly can be used by an inexperienced operator.

Protocol Analyzer

Protocol analyzer extends your ability to troubleshoot enterprise networks by easily gathering trace files across the network, from the network core to the most isolated segments and everything in between.

A Protocol Analyzer is today considered an essential part of the Network Manager's toolkit. The traditional view is that analyzers are useful for troubleshooting networks while SNMP tools are better for trending and service management. This document asks if a Protocol Analyzer has a role to play in the day to day management of a network? Protocol Analyzers may cost many thousands of dollars, or they may be completely free. Manufacturers, of course, all claim, sometimes extravagantly, that their products will sort out all your problems when used on real life networks. Are these claims justified? Are the costly products genuinely better than the free ones? Will you find out more if you use an expensive product? Are the sophisticated features useful enough to justify the cost? How do you decide which product best suits your needs?
What can Protocol Analyzers be used for?

Protocol Analyzers, often called "packet sniffers" after Network Associates market leading Sniffer product, capture packets and decode them into their component parts. Whether free or costly analyzers all do the same basic job. It's fairly obvious how analyzers can be used to troubleshooting network problems. Once a problem is detected packets are captured and analyzed and the details of the communication can be worked out. But analyzers can do more than this and, in fact, turn out to be surprisingly useful in many aspects of network management.